Authors, Readers, and Texts (MLI305)

The ART seminar focuses on understanding the relationship between authors, readers, and texts, with an emphasis on analyzing the relations between a text's form, content, and significance; understanding theories of textual interpretation; and practicing modes of critical reading.

To facilitate the discussion of intellectually serious and formally skillful writing — critical, creative, and theoretical —this reading-intensive course has a limited number of places.

When you sign up on StudentWeb, you will see whether or not the course has already been filled.

Course description for study year 2022-2023. Please note that changes may occur.


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Semester tution start


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This reading-intensive course focuses on the dynamic relationship between authors, readers, and texts. We will investigate the relation between a text's form and its function, theories of textual interpretation, and modes of critical reading. Students will develop their critical literacy skills by considering how theoretical ideas, concepts, and approaches in literary studies can be deployed to interpret texts from a variety of forms and genres (for example: short fiction, novels, drama, poetry, and electronic literature). Students will also develop a theoretical toolkit of questions and concepts they can use when conducting literary studies, enabling them to become more active, critically minded readers, who can better participate in relevant literary-critical conversations when writing their Master's theses.

Learning outcome


Students will learn about: 

  • the complex and varied relationships between authors, readers, and texts
  • theories of interpretation and their relevance to literary and cultural studies
  • reading and writing practices conducive to developing one's critical literacy
  • key theoretical concepts and critical debates in contemporary literary studies
  • significant literary-critical approaches and methodologies for interpretation-based disciplines across the arts and humanities


By the end of the course, committed students will improve their ability to: 

  • deploy critical theories and concepts to interpret to a variety of literary texts
  • understand issues and questions raised by selected texts from modern literary theory and criticism
  • summarize key concepts from modern literary theory and explain how they can be used when reading texts critically
  • analyze a selection of literary texts from relevant theoretical and critical frameworks
  • make informed choices about literary-critical and analytical approaches that may be useful when planning a Masters thesis on a topic in literary studies

General competence

By the end of the course, the students will be able to: 

  • understand factors affecting literacy, reading practices, and the production of literary writing in contemporary contexts
  • interpret texts critically by using modes of theoretical inquiry to develop relevant reading strategies
  • participate in academic conversations about intellectually serious and formally skillful texts relevant to literary studies
  • explain complex ideas orally and in writing

Required prerequisite knowledge

Required prerequisite knowledge equivalent for admission to the Master's in English and Literacy Studies. A Bachelor's degree, which includes at least 80 ECTS credits in English language and literature is required. 30 credits of the 80 credits must be at an advanced level.

Recommended prerequisites

As a seminar in literary criticism and theory, students should have successfully completed several advanced-level BA courses in English-language literature and literary studies. 

This reading-intensive course presupposes that students have a solid background in literature and literary studies (or closely related specialized courses) that prepared them to engage with intellectually serious and formally skillful works of literature, theory, and criticism. 


Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
Hjemmeeksamen 1/1 7 Days Letter grades

Home examination.Format: Short essays. Total words: 4000 words (±10%, excluding bibliography, quotations longer than 100 words.)Aids: Students may use the required and recommended texts from the course syllabus and their pull-quote worksheet.

Coursework requirements

Two written assignments, Seminars 80% attendance
  • Attendance at seminars is obligatory (80 %). 
  • Students who are absent from more than 20% of the seminar meetings will not be allowed to take the exam.
  • The student must be present for at least 2/3 of the duration of the individual seminar meeting for attendance to be recorded.
  • Pass two mandatory written assignments, one for each module (2400-3600 words for each). Complete two worksheets, updated weekly. (Students write brief glosses explaining "pull-quotes," passages they select from the critical and theoretical texts).

If an assignment is assessed as not approved on the first attempt, students are given one opportunity to submit a revised assignment.

Course teacher(s)

Course coordinator:

Eric Dean Rasmussen

Course teacher:

Nahum Nyincho Welang

Programme coordinator:

Signe Ekenberg

Method of work

Weekly seminar. Discussion-based seminars (on-campus and online) with online exercises.

Students are expected to:

  1. Spend at least 19 hours per week (approximately 16 out-of-class hours preparing for each 3-hour long seminar).
  2. Attend every seminar, unless health reasons and/or an emergency make attendance impossible. Register any absences in the current Course Management System (CMS), Canvas.
  3. Do the required reading before each seminar, keep up with weekly exercises on the syllabus, and come prepared to discuss the materials.
  4. Contribute to seminar discussions, both verbally and in writing, and participate in course exercises, both during the seminar meeting and online in the CMS (Canvas).
  5. Make use of online resources accessed via the CMS (Canvas).
  6. Check the CMS (Canvas) and UiS student email daily for updates and information.

Limited number of places

 When you sign up on StudentWeb, you will see whether or not the course has already been filled.

Overlapping courses

Course Reduction (SP)
Literacy from a Reception Perspective (MLI110_1) 15
Texts and Readers (MLI300_1) 10

Open for

Advanced teacher education for levels 8-13 English and Literacy Studies - Master's Degree Programme Literacy Studies - Master's Degree Programme - Part-time

Course assessment

The UiS quality system involves student evaluation of all courses.


The syllabus can be found in Leganto